Uncertainty over play park as charity rows with council

Families in Surfleet are no nearer knowing when repairs to a children's play area at Glen Park will be carried out so that the site can be reopened.
Families in Surfleet are no nearer knowing when repairs to a children's play area at Glen Park will be carried out so that the site can be reopened.

A popular children’s play park in Surfleet is no nearer reopening because of a row between the charity running it and council bosses over cash.

Surfleet Play and Recreation Charity (SPARC), owners of Glen Park, launched an appeal in partnership with the Lincolnshire Free Press to raise £4,000 for urgent repairs to a play area closed for safety reasons on July 4.

The appeal was launched when SPARC trustees claimed Lincolnshire County Council had misread its annual accounts over a repayment of more than £15,000 to the charity by five companies, including Barclays Bank and Western Power Distribution.

Trustees said council officials instead treated it as money owed by SPARC, giving them reason to turn down SPARC’s application for a community grant.

The council has since done a u-turn and offered SPARC a grant of almost £8,000 towards the repairs but there is still no news as to when the repairs will be carried out.

SPARC committee member Nick Davies said: “Everything is still up in the air because we’re waiting for other people to get back to us.

“The council asked a lot questions and we’ve been getting all the information 
together to send back to them.

“We didn’t want the play park to shut in the first place but we had no option because of all the insurance involved and now we’re just waiting to hear from other people as to when they are going to give us the money.”

The charity is close to reaching its £4,000 target after a £500 donation from Surfleet Parish Council in July.